Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Like all great travelers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen. -Benjamin Disraeli

I like to look at and see EVERYTHING around me. I have always been like that. I love looking at the details of things, like wood grains, carved staircases, and cobblestone streets. Hence, I have a fondness for museums. It is only there that you are expected to see everything, and stand and examine it. I also love watching the people at the museums. You have the old people, who just wander around, looking at the paintings with a practiced eye. Then you have the professors/teachers with their students, standing in front of something with their hands on their faces, trying to find something original to say that people have been saying for centuries. There are the families with their children, parents running after them, "DON'T TOUCH!", while thinking Don't break it! I would have to sell you into slavery to pay for it! Then you have the weird people like me, who look at the floors, the ceilings, out the windows, watch the people, and then turn around and see what the big deal is about.

Alexandra and I met at about 12. We went to one of the offices of tourism to get a schedule of when the museums are open. We also picked up the schedule of the buses to Barcelona for the next weekend, a bus schedule for Burgos, and I got a mass schedule as well. The nice thing is that even though she knew we weren't from here (I guess natives of Burgos probably don't go to the tourism offices, huh), she didn't speak English when she didn't think we understood. It helped our confidence so well, especially when she complimented us on our Spanish.

After receiving a compliment and options of things to do, we went to the Arch of Santa Maria. Built in 1553, it was an arch of triumph in honor of the visiting of the Emperor Carlos V. In the central part, all the statues are important people from the history of the Castille-Leon area. On top, the Guardian Angel of the city is topped only by Mary, the patron of the city of Burgos. Inside, there is a museum that brings together some of the most representative elements of the city's history. There is a replica of the sword of El Cid, a BEAUTIFUL Mudejar ceiling, as well as modern art from artists of the city. There is a nice view of the cathedral through stained glass windows. One of the best things I saw was this mother trying to teach her children about art. She ended up just following her young son around, telling him not to touch things. It was funny.

After this museum, we went to another one near the Cathedral. The Museum of the Altarpieces is in the Church of San Esteban, which is the perfect place for a museum of religious artifacts. The altarpieces are from churches in the area. It was beautiful. I loved the church too; the architecture was AMAZING.

After San Esteban, we decided to go eat. I was starving. We went to a little cafe/restaurant in the Plaza Mayor. I had a nice, dark beer and a hamburger with fries. I wasn't able to eat that much, since I am not used to heavy food such as this! Then we walked around for a bit, until we were both too exhausted to continue. I came home and took a nice 2 hour siesta. I love Saturdays.

Sunday, I woke up at noon and looked at the mass schedule that the lady at the tourism office gave me. There was a mass at 12:30 at the Church of San Nicolas, so I booked it. The little church is gorgeous. I think I am going to go there every week that I am in town; though change it up once in a while just to do something different.

The rest of the day consisted of resting. We had lunch at 3-ish, which consisted of a DELICIOUS roasted chicken, french fries, and salad. Dessert was a local cheese with walnuts and honey. It's so good.

I spent the day relaxing and getting ready for classes for the next day.

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